Monday, February 01st, 2010 | Author:
You gotta start wherever you are...

You gotta start wherever you are...

Well, it’s starting to come together in detail now… In a previous post (link), I discussed my goals for the program itself, and now I can report on the progress so far.

From a recent comment:

The fact is that people, to be happy, need to understand and accept who they ARE first, and then try to move this state to something compatible. To be a star you don’t have to sell your soul. Helping people, making other persons happy and successful is an alternate way.

Also, don’t be mad at me, but I find it kind of funny that you tell people self help books are not the solution, yet at the same time you plan for one, somehow…

The good news is that he’s right on both counts. He’s exactly on point.

First, I’m not developing a self help book. While it turns out that while I can knock out a killer article, I run out of creativity and charisma way short of a full chapter, let alone book. I’ve tried a few times over the years to take my model of the psyche and turn it into something people can use. Quite frankly, I’ve given up.

Second, my model of the psyche is built on acceptance of who you are today, then working to become who you want to be tomorrow. This core concept that I invented (hahaha) is thousands of years old…. it’s the concept of zen surrender.

Along the way, I’ve done a lot of research and reading and there are three books that stand head and shoulders above the rest. These authors have said what I was trying to say better than I could ever hope to say it myself. Sure, each of them is presenting only a part of what I feel should be the whole, but they overlap each other in material while complementing each other in point of view. Each has a lot to offer to anyone, and taken together they develop a unique synergy, each one building on and contributing to the others.

But as I handed out these books and encouraged people to read them, I had the same experience over and over. People take these magic books, they even read them from cover to cover…. and yet their life doesn’t really improve.

How can this be possible? How? It’s all right there!! Don’t you see?

And yes, they all see. Everyone sees. Everyone understands. They can repeat the material back to me. And yet they remain powerless to take action, to do in their own lives!

So where does that power come from and how can I unlock that power inside them? It comes from doing. What? Hey Einstein, we have a chicken and egg problem here. How can I do if I don’t know how to do?

Well the answer is that you give up your pride, set aside your expectation of doing good… and just do with whatever ability you have today. And you suck at it. But you keep doing it. And then one day you notice HEY! I suck slightly less at this than I did before! This is progress! And you keep at it. Little by little you keep at it.

I often use the analogy of hitting a baseball. You can read all about it, read 10 or 20 or even 30 books about hitting a baseball. Boy, you’ll know everything there is to know about hitting a baseball, and from every possible point of view. But your body on the other hand will have never swung a bat. It will have no muscle memory, no skills, no strength. You will be utterly and completely powerless to unlock this phenomenal power hitting baseball slugging knowledge you have inside you.

See the parallel?

Well we learn these so called life skills the same way we learn to swing a bat. By trial and error. Lots of trials and lots of errors. And a few hits in there along the way. Except a true zen master bats probably bats around .950 in the emotional big league. Me? I’m still working my way up through the minors.

Anyhow, the program takes the work of three great masters, and breaks it down into step by step lessons. The same way you learn to ski, or snowboard, or ride a bike, or swim, or knit, or cook, or really pretty much anything you’ve learned in life.

We start with the fundamentals, simple drills and exercises that seem kinda silly at first. Like stepping into a pitch that’s not even there, and swinging a bat you’re not even holding. And we do them over and over and over. And feel silly as *bleep* while doing them. And then we move on to something a little more advanced, but probably just a silly.

Then one day, we get some sign of progress, some clear sign of empowerment and improvement. That’s when we stop feeling silly and we can fully buy in. And we continue, each drill, each exercise building fundamental skills that we need, then we start putting them together in series and in combination. Follow the ball with your eyes, step into the ball, swing through with your head down, CRACK! follow through fully, and step out smoothly into your run to first base. All smooth, all fluid, all practiced a million times.

... To get to where you want to be.

... To get to where you want to be.


This is our emotional at bat… it all starts to come together, and we start getting base hits, doubles. One day we were thrilled to just make contact with the ball. Now we sometimes smack one over the fence. We can make contact on demand, so we can call a few plays… hit and run, sacrifice fly, and so on.

We can’t imagine how this could ever have been hard! We have a hard time even remembering our first feeble attempts at swinging the bat!

Well here’s a big juicy secret: While very few of us can ever play major league baseball… almost every single one of us has the capacity to step up to the emotional big league. We can all be successful. We can all be happy. We can all find the love of life and the love in life that we deserve.

And that’s what the program is about.

I have all of the units defined, and 35 of them drafted. Of course, writing them down is quick… then writing them down again so they make sense to anyone but me is painfully slow. But it’s looking good for an early spring launch!

If you haven’t done so yet, sign up for the mailing list on the right. You’ll get occasional blog updates, but more important you’ll get news on the program itself.

Any Questions? Any Comments? Post ‘em below!

John

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13 Responses

  1. Nice blog, keep up the good work and thank you for sharing. :)

  2. 2
    Devone 

    Is it a thirty day risk free trial?

  3. 3
    Jessica.E.Echols 

    interesting blog! I’m so happy I stumbled here through google i’m gonna have to put this one on the list

  4. 4
    Fransisca Lennington 

    You made some good points there. I did a search on the topic and found most people will agree with your blog.

  5. 5
    LASHANDRA 

    I’ve ended up searching all around for all of this material. Good thing I found it on Msn. i’m definitely going to follow.

  6. 6
    Schiel 

    Thanks for posting this article. I’m decidedly frustrated with struggling to search out pertinent and rational comment on this self improvement. Everybody now goes to the very far extremes to either drive home their viewpoint that either: everyone else in the planet is wrong, or two that everyone but them does not really understand the situation. Many thanks for your succinct, relevant insight.

  7. 7
    Ralph 

    This is what I need to hear right now,very encouraging – and makes a lot of sense.

  8. Love your post. This is great information, and I’m really glad I found it. Keep up the superb work.

  9. 9
    Sprinturf 

    Great work! keep the posts coming… i’ll keep reading them. Thanks

  10. 10
    coach bill 

    YES! Great piece, keep up the terrific work. This is the type of information that should gain recognition for.

    More teachers and coaches should learn from you. This is right on the money.

  11. 11
    Galen Lichte 

    I’m so glad I found your web page. My friend emailed it to me last week, but I just got around to checking it out. I must say I’m floored. I never really thought about it this way before.

    I joined your mail list. I can’t wait to hear more.

  12. 12
    Moin Raj 

    very interesting blog for sure I found it while looking for Lead Generation stuff surprisingly enough.

  1. [...] already have. You don’t need to do any more study, the best thing to do is always to start a self-help program to place that self help material into [...]

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